It’s never too late to start planning for retirement
You might be reading this post when you are in your late forties, fifties or even sixties and thinking that your financial landscape is pretty bleak. You are perhaps thinking about if it is too late to start saving for retirement. Perhaps you have lots of debt, including credit cards, no emergency fund and nothing in the way of retirement savings or other assets such as a house.
While you have lost your best years for retirement savings (your twenties and thirties) because you have mostly missed out on the power of compound interest which will make it much harder for you to retire early or at all, it is never too late to put your financial house in order.
Top 5 Tips for the “Older” Retirement Planner
Work Past 65
Assess carefully whether or not you can retire at 65, or whatever age you had in mind. It is not uncommon for people to continue to work past 65, at least part-time. If you want to crunch some numbers for your own situation, check out a “Retirement Withdrawal Calculator.”
Get out of Debt
It is even more urgent for you to get out of debt than it is for someone who is younger. There is probably no worse scenario for you than to be forced to retire through an illness of some sort and still have debts. This will involve massive sacrifice for a year or two, or however long it takes. You are on life-support, financially speaking, so urgent action is required.
Re-balance your Portfolio
If you do have any investments, now is not the time to be gambling them away. Only invest in blue chip dividend paying stocks and broad market stock or bond ETFs. Additionally, you should hold a more significant portion of bonds the older you get.
Consider your Spending Habits
Take time to reflect carefully about what spending habits got you into this bad situation in the first place. Too many expensive clothes or electronic toys? Eating out? Flashy cars? Expensive luxury vacations? Poor decisions related to employment? Change your habits or you will never be able to secure your financial future.
It is expensive to live in a place like Canada so consider living somewhere in South-East Asia or South or Central America. A few places to look at would be Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Ecuador or Nicaragua. You could live in any of these places for less than $1,000 a month if you are frugal. But, beware: many of these countries require a certain income level in order to give you a “retirement” visa, so you will need to check this carefully.
(This is a sample from my new book,The Wealthy English Teacher: Teach, Travel, and Secure Your Financial Future).